The Strategic Hub for Innovation and Financial Technology (Finhub) at the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) will host a series of local peer-to-peer (p2p) meetups across the country. The initiative, which aims to engage more actively with the crypto and wider fintech community, was announced via the agency’s website on March 6.
As previously reported, Finhub was created in fall 2018 with the aim of facilitating the SEC’s engagement in fintech-related fields, including, among others, distributed ledger technology (DLT) and digital assets.
Finhub’s p2p meetups will reportedly allow innovators, developers, attorneys and entrepreneurs to engage in person with SEC staff in order to clarify specific or broad questions or requests which fall within the agency’s regulatory purview — federal securities laws.
The meetups will reportedly kick off in the San Francisco area on March 26, at the SEC’s regional office, before extending to other offices across the country.
Ahead of registering their interest in attending a meetup with the regulator, the public is asked to indicate their general sphere of interest, as well as the specific purpose of their requested meeting. Options for the former include “advisory services related to digital assets,” “digital asset trading platforms,” digital marketplace financing” and “funds related to digital assets.”
In indicating the specific purpose of the requested meeting, the public is offered a choice that includes “custody inquiry,” “determination of instrument as a “‘security’” and several registration enquiries for intermediaries, securities, funding portals or trading platforms.
Prospective attendees are also able to provide detailed information, research and any other supporting materials they wish to present before SEC staff. The agency notes that before contacting Finhub with a personal request for a meetup, many of the more common questions the agency receives regarding digital assets are broadly addressed online in its “Spotlight on Initial Coin Offerings and Digital Assets” resource.
Finhub is headed by Valerie A. Szczepanik, Senior Advisor for Digital Assets and Innovation and Associate Director at the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance — otherwise colloquially referred to as the agency’s “crypto czar.”
Ahead of this latest bid to make its activities more accessible to the crypto and fintech communities, the agency has recently been promoting its initial coin offerings guidance on on social media, with tweets from this February and the end of November 2018 inviting the public to learn five things it needs to know about the fundraising mechanism.